A curriculum on medical ignorance

Marlys H Witte, A. Kerwin, C. L. Witte, A. Scadron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The information and technology explosions in medicine have exposed the vast realm of ignorance in human biology as well as the transiency of accepted knowledge and short-comings of instructional methods which foster rote memorization, excessive reliance on conflicting data bases, and short-answer testing. To circumvent this serious deficiency in medical education, we have initiated a multifaceted Curriculum on Medical Ignorance consisting of 'questioning' seminars and hands-on clinical and laboratory experiences. This teaching programme not only emphasizes medicine's current deficiencies and limited insight into disease processes (i.e. ignorance) but also assists students in developing attitudes and behaviours to investigate basic biologic and clinical unknowns while rendering sound everyday clinical decisions in the face of fragmentary understanding. Based on evaluative feedback over the past 3 years, participants have made substantial progress towards recognizing and dealing constructively with medical ignorance and the limitations of 'knowledge of the day', thereby preparing them for the certain uncertainty of future medical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-29
Number of pages6
JournalMedical Education
Volume23
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1989

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Curriculum
Medicine
medicine
curriculum
teaching program
Explosions
medical practice
Medical Education
Uncertainty
biology
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Databases
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Technology
Disease
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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Nursing(all)
  • Education

Cite this

Witte, M. H., Kerwin, A., Witte, C. L., & Scadron, A. (1989). A curriculum on medical ignorance. Medical Education, 23(1), 24-29.

A curriculum on medical ignorance. / Witte, Marlys H; Kerwin, A.; Witte, C. L.; Scadron, A.

In: Medical Education, Vol. 23, No. 1, 1989, p. 24-29.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Witte, MH, Kerwin, A, Witte, CL & Scadron, A 1989, 'A curriculum on medical ignorance', Medical Education, vol. 23, no. 1, pp. 24-29.
Witte MH, Kerwin A, Witte CL, Scadron A. A curriculum on medical ignorance. Medical Education. 1989;23(1):24-29.
Witte, Marlys H ; Kerwin, A. ; Witte, C. L. ; Scadron, A. / A curriculum on medical ignorance. In: Medical Education. 1989 ; Vol. 23, No. 1. pp. 24-29.
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